COLUMBUS (WCMH) — 97-year-old Alfred Tibor experienced so much through his life, like surviving the Holocaust and being a prisoner of war. Tibor came to the United States in 1956, and settled in Columbus in 1972.
He passed away Saturday.
As an artist, he found a way to give back to the world and to the city he came to love.
Skip Cornett, Tibor’s friend workmate, said Tibor was quite passionate about many things and shared that with others.
“He went through it all and yet he stands up embraces the rest of the world with his arms, with his art, with his passion and his love for others,” Cornett said.
Some of that art work can be seen here in Columbus. One piece he created called “Freedom” sits at Battelle Riverfront Park. He gave it to the city because it was here in America that he became free to achieve his dreams.
There’s also a sculpture at Saint Charles Prep School called “With Knowledge.” On the plaque it reads, “As a Holocaust survivor, I believe that my life was speared to do my work so people may enjoy it. Whether it is one of my Holocaust sculptures, a biblical figure, or a woman standing proud and tall, the human aspect of the piece is what is being expressed to the viewer — that there is beauty and value to be found in all our lives, for I truly believe that life is a celebration.”
No one knew Tibor better than his family. During his funeral at Congregation Agudas Achim, they said at times Tibor seemed invincible, but on this day they reflected on his remarkable life journey.
“It is astonishing to me that a man whose early life was colored by tragedy, loss and darkness could still choose to find humor and light in life,” said Tibor’s granddaughter Simon.
Not only will Tibor’s legacy live on here in Columbus, but it will also live on throughout the world in the form of his sculptures.